There's got to be another way!

The numerous lightning blasts outside repeatedly cut jagged swats of illumination through the pounding rain and cast ominous vertical shadows along the far wall from the iron bars set in the windows.  Each clap of thunder rocked the glass panes within their shoddy placement inside the windows, and the world outside hinted of armageddon with each new lightning strike, which is why many of the patients inside the Institute sought refuge beneath the darkened safety of their bed.  The night nurse seemed oblivious to any outside indication of the End Of Days, however, and cast a stern look across his bow while simultaneously keeping her arms crossed solidly at her breast.  It was a look of authority which she had cultivated over her years as a Mental Health nurse, and that -- combined with her above-average height -- made her undoubtedly intimidating.

It proved doubly intimidating when the recipient of such a stare was a balding, middle-aged man of 5'3" who nervously nibbled his fingertips as he paced.

"LM," he said in his most reasonable voice, emphasizing his perfect diction in hopes of elevating his levels of persuasion, "I must protest my mother's desire to lobotomize me."

"Don't call me LM, Mr. Rozzlebottom.  My name is Nurse Scanlan, if you please."

The little man brushed away her request with his hand an a "Pshah!"  He smiled and said, "I rather like Louisa May, but it's too long for casual conversation, so LM it is."

"This isn't casual conversation, Mr. Rozzlebottom.  I am your nurse."

"And a fine nurse at that," he nodded, "a woman who knows how to say no to my mother.  She can't have my intellect, you see.  I need it."

Scanlan sighed, "A lobotomy does not remove your intellect, Mr. Rozzlebottom; it simply takes away the primeval urges that some people cannot control."

Rozzlebottom tilted his head to one side and raised one eyebrow, "Do I look like a danger to you, LM?"

"Don't call me --"

"A lobotomy is merely a fancy term for essentially taking an egg beater and scrambling my frontal cortex.  Now I may be a disgrace to the family name now, LM, but I assure you, once apon a time the name Ignacious T. Rozzlebottom was synonymous with teleportation and Time Travel Theory.  I was at the forefront!"

Scanlan scowled.  While it was true that the little man standing before her, whose cranium seemed to be outgrowing his hair, was once a physicist of some renown, nothing in his file mentioned either teleportation or time travel as his areas of expertise.  Was time travel even a science?

Or Science Fiction?

One couldn't tell with psychosis.

A wry smile touched the little man's lips, and he said, "Even with a damaged brain, I am still smarter than 97% of the population, so you see why I can't let Mother have my brain; she simply wouldn't understand.  It's what makes me... me!"

Scanlan shrugged and looked out the window as another lightning bolt dissected the ozone beyond the darkened trees, "I am sorry, Mr. Rozzlebottom, but the doctors think that this might be the only way to cure you."

"Make me a vegetable, you mean.  And call me Ignacious."

"All right... Iggy."

"No, no, no.  Ignacious if you please."

She shook her head, "If I'm LM than I guess you'll have to be Iggy."

He pursed his lips as he pondered the importance of being called by one's real name, as opposed to (an unflattering) nickname.  Finally he smiled broadly and said, "Fair enough, LM.  Come with me and let me show you why I need my intellect more than the doctors need my mother's fat paychecks."

Scanlan raised an eyebrow, "Where are we going?"

"To my room!"


Iggy put his forefinger to the side of his nose and whispered, "Because that's where I've hidden my time machine!"

The End

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